A teenager needs a triple organ transplant after a rare disease has left the organs of a "retiree."
Yasmin Swift, 19, of Ashford, Kent, requires double lung and heart transplantation for her idiopathic pulmonary arterial hypertension.
At first, the doctors were confused when the former cheerleader struggled to catch her breath after climbing the stairs and experiencing severe pain in her chest.
Having finally been diagnosed last November, the barber now gets the strongest medication she can get. It is delivered 24 hours a day with an infusion pump.
However, this does not help alleviate their suffering. The teenager's life is turned upside down as she is too exhausted to dance with her friends or go to festivals.
Teenager Yasmin Swift needs a triple organ transplant after a disease has left her with the heart and lungs of a "retiree." Last year, she was diagnosed with idiopathic pulmonary arterial hypertension after having difficulty climbing the stairs without becoming breathless
Miss Swift has posted a photo of herself on Instagram, which gets oxygen that she needs to have during sleep. The tubes wake her up with a dried-up nose and a stain on her face that only fades hours later. She adds that she is "very happy" to stay alive
On her symptoms, Miss Swift said, "About a year ago I was really uncomfortable and I felt pretty breathless and literally walked up one flight of stairs.
"I had to stop. I really felt tired all the time. I also felt pretty weak and had chest pains.
"My legs swelled, but I was sent away by the doctors."
Although she has finally been diagnosed and treated, Miss Swift says the medications do little to alleviate her suffering.
"They gave me medicines that were strongest for me, but not much," she said.
"Next is the lung transplant and possibly a heart transplant. But you never know what could happen. I'll just enjoy what I have and not worry about what I'm not doing. "
"But it's a very different condition, that's the hard thing.
"Sometimes you can load loads, you can run evenly for ten minutes, but on other days you just stay on the sofa all day."
The teenager made headlines in July after a rider left a rude message on her windshield saying that despite her blue badge, she had illegally parked in a disabled area and threatened to report it
She went to Facebook, showed her badge and urged others not to judge by appearances
The teenager made headlines in July after a driver left a rude message on the windshield saying that despite her blue badge, she had illegally parked at a disabled location.
Miss Swift posted the note on Facebook, claiming she was "not disabled" and threatening to warn the authorities.
WHAT IS IDIOPATHIC PULMONARY ARTERIAL HYPERTENSION?
Idiopathic pulmonary arterial hypertension is defined for no apparent reason as hypertension in the pulmonary arteries.
It usually worsens over time and can be fatal if it leads to heart failure.
IPAH affects up to one in 67,000 people.
In severe cases, the diagnosis has a life expectancy of about 10 years.
Most sufferers are diagnosed at the age of 40, with the disease being twice as likely in women as in men.
Early symptoms can be:
- chest pain
- Loss of consciousness
- Fluid accumulates in the feet and lower legs
Medications are available to lower blood pressure and facilitate breathing.
In severe cases, a heart or lung transplant may be required.
However, these carry the risk that the organs are rejected or cause infections.
Pregnancy is generally not recommended for IPAH patients because of the additional stress on the heart.
"It infuriates you that people judge you about your appearance and do not know what you go through daily to get to the point where you can go out and have fun," Miss Swift said.
"I wish people would not judge people by their looks, but I know it's easy to say that."
Although Miss Swift, who was a cheerleader at secondary school, looks like any other teenage girl, she claims her life has been turned upside down since her diagnosis.
"I liked to go to the gym, I went about five times a week," she said.
"And I also loved dancing and going to festivals. I would be on the road every weekend, but I had to end this massively.
"I'm takeaway with my friends and when I'm birthday, I would be there, I do not want to miss such things.
"But going out on the weekend, I miss it, I've always been the one who enjoyed the most because I like to dance."
Although Miss Swift managed to go to a festival this year, she had to use the disabled access.
"It really took me out of it for days," she said.
Going on holiday has also become a struggle, as Miss Swift has a hard time breathing in the heat.
She wants to raise awareness of her condition by posting this on her Instagram page.
Her family and friends also raised money for the Pulmonary Hypertension Association UK, which has supported Miss Swift since her diagnosis.